Happy summer!!! Since today is officially the first day of summer, I thought I would take some time to write about my favorite things about summer! (These are not necessarily in order of importance.)
1. Sweet Freedom!
Ah, yes. The life of a teacher. I thoroughly enjoy teaching students, but I enjoy a relaxing summer equally as much! I can sleep in if I want, go grocery shopping on a Thursday morning if I want, take all day to can salsa if I want, and the list goes on. This summer especially, I have a list in my mind of things I want to get accomplished, and I will, but at my own pace. I love getting up whenever I wake up, eating breakfast, drinking coffee, and then taking my time to get my day started.
2. Gardening and Canning
I enjoy our vegetable garden. I love watching the plants grow, and then picking the foods that come from them. I love knowing exactly where the food came from, and that no chemicals were sprayed on it. I love being able to go to our basement and grab a jar of salsa, or green beans, or spaghetti sauce, or whatever I need for supper that evening. I love chopping vegetables for salsas and relishes. (Except hot peppers…I learned my lesson last year attempting to make pickled banana peppers and now I wear two rubber gloves on each hand when chopping hot peppers!) The only things I do not like about our garden are the bugs and the weeds. But I guess the hard work makes the harvest more enjoyable!
When we moved into our house, the previous owner loved her flowers! I do too, but in smaller quantities! However, there was one type of flower that I thought I ripped out because I did not know what it was, but it came back the following summer (it had a massive root system). I did a little research on them and found out they are called “moonflowers.” They only bloom at night, and have big white flowers. Then, when the sun hits the plants, the flowers close up and eventually fall off. They are so beautiful, and I had never seen them until I inherited them!
4. Family Picnics
Our family picnics are the best! There is always too much food, but it is all delicious! A hot dog never tasted better than roasted on a stick over an open fire! We sit and chat, and catch up on events that may have happened since the last time we were all together. Just recently, we traveled to a state park and had a picnic there. It was nice and cool in the shade of the trees and sunny and warm when we walked around the lake, making it a great picnic environment!
5. Iced Coffee
There is something special about wearing sunglasses, driving a car somewhere, and sipping iced coffee on the way!
6. Sun Tans
I have always been light-complected. So generally, what happens on the first sunny day is I get a sunburn. However, I have figured out that if I spend shorter amounts of time in the garden during the middle of the day, I do not burn nearly as bad, and the color I do gain turns to tan by the next morning. And once I have a base tan, it is much more difficult for my skin to burn. I love the sun kissed glow of tan skin!
7. Tiger Lilies
We have these orange flowers that grow along creek banks and around trees and at the edges of roads. They are wild lilies, and ever since I’ve been a little girl, these have been my favorite flowers. I even incorporated them into the bouquets and boutineers for our wedding! When they start blooming in the summer time, they just make the landscapes look a little brighter!
8. Ice Cream
Soft serve ice cream is like my kryponite. We have an ice cream/pizza shop just a few miles from our house. We do not go super often, but once in a while we take a drive and get some soft serve ice cream. My husband chuckles at me because I always get the same thing: chocolate! When you know you like something, why deviate??
9. Longer Days
Summer brings longer days and more daylight. One of my favorite times to work in the garden is just as the sun is going down behind the mountains. The bugs are not nearly as active and it is usually much cooler. I also enjoy sitting out on our porch with my husband (on our newly acquired patio chairs) and simply enjoying the view and each other’s company. It does not happen often, because there are always things that need done. But when we make time to sit and take in the cool evening air, it is very enjoyable.
10. Hanging Laundry Out To Dry
Yes, this one may seem out of place. But this truly is one of my favorite things. I love the way my laundry smells after it has been hanging outside in the fresh air! I can still hang clothes out during the school year, but I have to look at the weather more carefully since I am not at home to grab the clothes off the line if it starts to rain. I also have to make sure I run the laundry through the washer the night before because our washer takes awhile to do its job. And if I forget to do that, my plans are foiled! Whereas in the summer, I can wash the laundry in the morning and still hang it out with plenty of time for it to dry.
I absolutely love watching fireworks around the Fourth of July! My husband and I normally go to two different towns to see their fireworks. Each year, there is something slightly different about them. I think it is so beautiful when the different colors light up the sky!
Summer really is a wonderful time of year! Aside from the humidity and bugs, there is so much to enjoy! What are your favorite things about summertime? Feel free to comment and share your ideas!